New £7.5m road opens to traffic at St Patrick’s regeneration site in Ballymena

A key stage in the transformation of the St Patrick’s regeneration site in Ballymena has been reached with the completion of a new £7.5million road.
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The road, funded by the Department for Communities (DfC), is now open to traffic with pathways along the river that were closed to facilitate works now re-opened. Around 280 semi-mature trees and 14,000 square metres of shrub and hedging have been planted.

Gerard Murray, director of the DfC regional development office, commented: “The completion of this road is a vital stage in the regeneration of the former St Patrick’s Barracks and links the site back to the Ballymena community and town centre.

"For the first time in decades, local people can travel through the site, as the road not only facilitates the site’s regeneration plans but also provides a link from the north of the town towards the Larne link road and opens it up to the river and land around the Ecos Park.

At the completed road at the St Patrick’s regeneration Sste are: David McQuitty, Department for Infrastructure; Gerard Murray, director regional development office, Department for Communities; Roy McNeilly, contracts manager, FP McCann Ltd and Gerard McLarnon, technical director, Amey Consulting Ltd. Photo submitted by Department for CommunitiesAt the completed road at the St Patrick’s regeneration Sste are: David McQuitty, Department for Infrastructure; Gerard Murray, director regional development office, Department for Communities; Roy McNeilly, contracts manager, FP McCann Ltd and Gerard McLarnon, technical director, Amey Consulting Ltd. Photo submitted by Department for Communities
At the completed road at the St Patrick’s regeneration Sste are: David McQuitty, Department for Infrastructure; Gerard Murray, director regional development office, Department for Communities; Roy McNeilly, contracts manager, FP McCann Ltd and Gerard McLarnon, technical director, Amey Consulting Ltd. Photo submitted by Department for Communities

“Anyone using the new road, footpaths and cycle way will be able to see how much the site is being transformed. Construction is well under way by Radius Housing of the shared housing scheme, as well as Northern Regional College’s new campus bordering the site.

Civic Space

"Plans are well progressed for civic space, a leisure and wellbeing centre, PSNI building and the I4C innovation campus. This is really the beginning of what will be delivered here and shows what can be achieved when there is genuine collaboration. We continue to work with all our partners, including Mid and East Antrim Borough Council and PSNI, to deliver on our shared vision.”

The scheme was delivered by FP McCann Ltd and Amey for the Department for Infrastructure (DfI) which managed the project on behalf of DfC.

Alan Keys, divisional Roads manager, said: “The Department for Infrastructure has worked closely with the Department for Communities and our contractors on the delivery of this important scheme which will deliver significant benefits to Ballymena and the wider area.

“It is particularly pleasing that walking and cycling links have been improved by the construction of this road to provide people with sustainable and active travel options for their journeys. The opening of the new road is great news for the local community and will play a vital part in the ongoing regeneration of the area.”

As part of its contract, FP McCann delivered a wide range of community benefits. These included employment, apprenticeships, university placements and school placements.

The company also worked closely locally, with talks and visits for schools and community groups and repainted playground lines for Ballymena Nursery School.